Task management software is an incredibly powerful tool that can help you assign tasks, track progress, share new information and drive collaboration within the team, all without having to track individual emails or hold frequent project review meetings. In a recent post, Ramon Ray briefly touched upon the benefits of task management software.
In fact whether you run a publishing firm, home-delivery service, business consultancy or a manufacturing unit, task management software can deliver many benefits such as:
- Improved employee productivity: Fewer business meetings to discuss progress on assigned tasks means that employees will be able to utilize their time more productively.
- Improved service delivery: Get things done faster than competition.
- Lower project costs: With everyone in loop on relevant information, there are fewer chances of errors / delays
- Supports ‘work from anywhere’ culture: Most task management solutions can be accessed through a web browser and therefore can be updated remotely.
Worried that everyone in your team isn’t working in the same direction or that your are wasting too many productive hours collecting information from individual members? Perhaps one of these five web-based task management applications can help.
- DropTask : The first thing that strikes you about this application is the beautiful visual display. Each task is set up as a colorful circle, which can be prioritized, grouped and shared with others in the team. Tasks which require greater effort for completion are displayed as bigger circles and can be filtered for view as per priority flags or progress status. For those in your team that prefer things the old fashioned way, tasks can also be viewed as a list. Designed for both individual and business use, this application is currently available free of cost.
- Trello: Another visual task management application it has a free and paid version at $5 per month for individuals as well as a business version with advanced features at $25 a month. If you have been using a white-board and post-its to track things in the work place, then this will be a familiar transition. Projects are organized as boards, with lists under each board ( to-do, doing and done) to record tasks. Tasks can be reorganized between lists through a simple drag and drop. A progress bar shows how close to completion a project is based on completed tasks.
- Basecamp by 37 Signals: Basecamp offers all the basic project management tools for collaborating with a large team. The project management portal is the central place where all activity around a project occurs. Each member can view tiles for projects that they are a part of and access information as per defined roles. A neat option is the Catchup button which summarizes the progress made during the day. You can test this application for free for 60 days for a single project. The paid plans start at $20 a month for 10 projects.
- ProofHub: Launched in 2010 this software has all the essentials of a project management tool – integrated project manager, milestones, notification and inbuilt chat. The high resolution image viewing make it especially suitable for those in the design business. Information on multiple-members working on the same project can be hidden using the aptly named ‘casper’ mode. The application can be used for 30 days free of cost. The paid membership varies from $15 to $149 per month.
- Asana: Used by the team at Smallbiztechnology, this project management software allows you to set up and monitor multiple projects and assign tasks and subtasks within each to different members of your team. Other key features include the ability to add information directly from email, color code projects and chat within tasks with other members and/or guests. You can use the software free for the first 15 members of your team, with unlimited guests allowed as well. With additional members, plans begin at $50 per month.
While DropTask and Trello are more apt for organizing day to day team tasks, Basecamp and ProofHub are more suitable for larger collaboration projects involving geographically dispersed teams.